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    The demand for tower climbers is increasing at an incredible rate. Cell towers all over the country need repairs and upgrades. To safely climb towers, you will need some basic training, and a few key pieces of equipment: Helmet, Harness, Fall-Arrest Lanyard, Positioning Lanyard, Gloves, and Carabiners. With proper training and equipment, tower climbing can be a great job opportunity.

    helmet Optimized


    An absolutely essential part of a tower climber’s gear, the helmet protects you from falling objects and other hazards while you’re climbing. Any helmet used on a tower should be at least a category 1 helmet, rated for top impacts. A bolt accidentally dropped from 200 feet can quickly become a dangerous bullet looking for a target at the base of the tower.

    Helmet Selection
    harness Optimized


    The tower climbing harness is your office chair – if it’s not comfortable, you won’t be comfortable all day. Your tower harness will be used for positioning and fall arrest. A good tower harness will have at least four D-rings: 1 on the chest (sternal), 1 on the back (dorsal), and 2 on the sides for positioning. The Chest and Back D-rings are usually rated for Fall-Arrest, while the side D-rings are not. Some tower climbing harnesses also include built-in seats for added comfort.

    Tower Harness Selection
    shockyard Lanyard Optimized


    Also called a Y-lanyard, V-lanyard, or 100% tie-off, this is an essential piece of gear. With two hooks, these lanyards enable you to always be tied-off since you can attach one before removing the other. In the event of a fall, the lanyard has built-in shock absorption, limiting the force you exerted on your body. Different styles of safety lanyards require different climbing styles; be sure you are properly trained on the equipment you use.

    Fall-arrest Lanyard Selection
    positioning Lanyard Optimized


    Also called a positioning strap, this piece of equipment is more than just comfort on the tower. A proper positioning safety lanyard should be easily adjustable, and should keep you within 24” of the tower at all times. It helps stabilize you while you are working, and acts as fall prevention (as opposed to fall-arrest). Many styles are available, so choose one safety lanyard that fits your needs.

    Positioning Strap Selection
    Tower climbing gloves


    Towers can be sharp depending on how they are built and as a result, a good pair of tower climbing gloves is necessary. Protecting your hands while you work and climb is a key element of personal safety. Nobody likes having to climb, or work, with an injured hand. A tough, comfortable pair of tower climbing gloves will help you work comfortably all day.

    Climbing Gloves Selection
    carabiner Optimized


    Useful for more things than duct-tape, carabiners are a good thing to have on your rig. They come in various sizes and strengths, but it’s a good idea to make sure the ones you’re using are ANSI Z359.1 (07) rated. (Hint: It will be stamped on the carabiner if it is.) Carabiners connect all of the pieces together (e.g. your positioning strap to your side D-rings). It never hurts to have a few extra carabiners.

    Carabiner Selection
    Scott Tower Climbing Tower climbing harness Tower Climbing Helmet Tower Climbing Gloves Fall Arrest Safety Lanyard Carabiner Positioning Safety Lanyard
    • HELMET
    • GLOVES

    Videos Shot at Safety One Training Center.



    Getting your foot in the door with Tower Climbing can be a bit confusing, but here are some suggestions for where to start. If you have any experience in a related field like construction, wiring, rock climbing, or other skills, you might want to try to apply for some jobs first. Once you are hired, many companies will pay for your training and/or gear. If you are starting from scratch, you may want to invest in some training and/or gear in order to make yourself more marketable. It’s not a bad investment - with most tower climbing jobs paying in the $20/hr range, with plenty of overtime it’s easy to pay that back fast! Depending on the job, be prepared to travel quite a bit... the towers won’t come to you! If you want, follow our blog (blog.ropeandrescue.com) where we regularly post content that we think would be helpful for people looking to get their foot in the door.







    Under OSHA 1910.66 Fall Protection regulations, “The employer shall provide for prompt rescue of employees in the event of a fall or shall assure the self-rescue capability of employees.” OSHA generally considers a 15-minute window to be “prompt” timing for a rescue. Whether in a remote rural area or in an urban hub, 15 minutes can be a small window for EMS crews to be notified, arrive, and rescue someone. The presence on an on-site tower rescue kit and proper personnel training is the best way to comply with OSHA standards and to show an OSHA inspector that you are serious about job-site safety.


    Radio Frequency Monitor

    Radio Frequency Radiation (RF) can pose a serious danger to the tower worker. Even short periods of exposure in front of high-powered antennas can cause irreparable damage to the human body. A personal RF Monitor clips on your tower harness and picks up RF signals as you move around the tower. The RF monitor will alert you to dangerous exposure areas in your work area. REMEMBER: If you feel like you have a fever or the flu while on the tower, descend immediately! These can be symptoms of RF over-exposure!


    LadSaf Cable Grab

    Cable grabs are used for vertical climbing in tandem with a ladder system. A good cable grab should trail smoothly as you climb up and down, and be connected to the chest D-ring on your harness. They are NOT the same thing as rope grabs, nor are they interchangeable.







    Headlamp - Tower climbing equipment.

    Spreader Bar - Tower climbing equipment.

    Tool Bungee - Tower climbing equipment.




    Gear Bags - Tower climbing equipment.

    Haul Bags - Tower climbing equipment.

    Cooling Accessories - Tower climbing equipment.



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